Is there a way to get Windows 8 to use my secondary monitor for the start screen?

  • Ok, so from what I hear, it sounds like the Windows8 start screen is incapable of spanning 2 screens?
    – djangofan
    Dec 30, 2012 at 22:17

4 Answers 4


The Windows Start screen's monitor placement can easily be toggled between multiple monitors.

When viewing the Start screen, press Win+PageUp or Win+PageDown to move it to the next monitor.

It will continue to open on the other monitor until you switch it back. Windows 8 apps (previously known as Metro Apps) will also follow the start screen and open on the second monitor.

Windows 8.1 Update - The Win+PageUp or Win+PageDown shortcuts no longer work in Windows 8.1. You must now use Shift+Win+Left Arrow or Shift+Win+Right Arrow

  • Easy, yes. Intuitive, no.
    – Alex
    Sep 19, 2013 at 22:43
  • Not doing anything for me... Can anyone confirm whether this still works on 8.1?
    – Kavi
    Oct 19, 2013 at 15:17
  • Kavi, you are correct that it no longer works in Windows 8.1. You now have to use Shift+Win+Left Arrow or Shift+Win+Right Arrow.
    – Jeremy
    Oct 21, 2013 at 18:50
  • 2
    Thanks Jeremy. Shift+Win+Right Arrow does work on Windows 8.1, but it doesn't seem to remember which monitor it was switched to. Start reverts back to the primary monitor every time.
    – Kavi
    Oct 22, 2013 at 16:13

Typically, Windows puts the start screen on whatever monitor is set as main.

To change which monitor is set as main:

  1. Right click on an empty space on the desktop and click on Screen Resolution.
  2. At the top, you will see your current main display with the Start Menu in the lower left corner. NOTE: If you do not know which monitor is which, then click on the Identity button to display the number on the display to match them with.
  3. At the top, click on the numbered display device (ex: monitor, projector or HDMI TV) that you want to make your main display to have its border highlighted.
  4. Check the Make this my main display box, and click on OK to apply. NOTE: You will notice that you when you check this box, the Start Menu will now be in that numbered display.

I am not aware of any method that allows you to change which monitor the login screen is on without changing the monitor the start menu is on. Perhaps, one can write a script triggered by login. Perhaps another wonderful superuser can chime in below.

  • Problem with this is that applications and such will open up on the wrong monitor by default, which would be a bit annoying.
    – Svish
    Sep 27, 2012 at 21:12
  • 2
    Many times, the application actually remembers what monitor it was on when it closed and then defaults to that monitor next time you open it. For example, when I leave my laptop plugged in at home, spotify remembers to open on my laptop screen and not my monitor which is set as main.
    – PatKilg
    Oct 12, 2012 at 15:23
  • 3
    Yeah, but main problems are for example full screen applications like games and such which only opens on the primary monitor.
    – Svish
    Oct 14, 2012 at 16:01
  • Ahh, fair point.
    – PatKilg
    Oct 14, 2012 at 21:13

as far as I know is that if you set the taskbar to span both screens, then the start screen will open on the monitor where it is clicked. in case of the keyboard it always opens on the primary unless you set an option:

right click on taskbar -> tab "navigation" -> "When windows-logo-ley is pressed, show start page on the active monitor"

(names of the options are probably different, since they are brain-translated from German)


On Windows 8.1:

  1. Right click the taskbar and click on 'Properties'
  2. Switch to the 'Navigation' tab
  3. Untick 'Show Start on the display I'm using when I press the Windows logo key'

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.